Serbia signs first inter-state agreement with Saudi Arabia

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic on Thursday met with Prince Sultan bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

Source: Beta

Vucic "presented the results of the government's economic measures" to his guest, who who heads the Supreme Commission for Tourism and Antiquities of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Vucic "expressed satisfaction with the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries in 2013 and the opening of the embassy of the Republic of Serbia in Riyadh, as well as the hope that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will soon open its embassy in Belgrade," Tanjug reported.

Vucic "presented to the Saudi prince the results of the government's economic measures, expressing the wish that Saudi companies find an interest in investing in Serbia," said a statement from the government press office.

Possibilities for cooperation in tourism were "particularly stressed," according to this.

The Saudi prince said that Serbia's image internationally had become "stable and positive."

He commended the hospitality he encountered in Belgrade and stressed the beauty of its landmarks, saying he expected the Belgrade Waterfront project "to make it even more beautiful and attractive to tourists."

Belgrade Mayor Sinisa Mali met with the Saudi prince on Thursday and presented the project.

Sultan bin Salman also presented projects in Saudi Arabia, inviting Serbian companies to compete for related jobs. He proposed the holding of a Saudi-Serbian business forum that would determine the possibilities of economic cooperation.

Representatives of the Serbian government and Saudi Arabia on Thursday signed a memorandum on cooperation in the area of tourism, saying they were convinced it would be the foundation of future economic and political relations between the two countries.

Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications Minister Rasim Ljajic told reporters afterwards that this was the first inter-state agreement Serbia has signed with Saudi Arabia, and that the goal was "to attract investors and tourists from that country."

Sultan bin Salman said he was "very optimistic" when it comes to future cooperation with Serbia.

"Serbia is now organizing its investment portfolio. It is a state in a strategically good place and has a capable government," he remarked, and added it was now up to the Serbian government and businesspeople to convince investors in Saudi Arabia that Serbia is a good and stable place for investment.

"Riyadh to be informed"

Prince Sultan bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud stated in Belgrade on Thursday that he will inform the Riyadh about the stand of the Serbian government which is opposing Kosovo's UNESCO membership.

"The issues concerning Kosovo and UNESCO are under the jurisdiction of another ministry in Saudi Arabia and I would rather not discuss the point during the visit," Sultan bin Salman said.

He noted that he conferred concerning the matter with Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic and Deputy Prime Minister Rasim Ljajic, and added that he would inform Saudi Arabia about their stand concerning Kosovo's UNESCO membership in an adequate manner.

Replying to reporters' questions, the prince said that Saudi Arabia is "firmly committed to preservation and protection of cultural heritage of all nations in the world."

Politics

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